Microprocessor Side-Channel Vulnerabilities “Meltdown” and “Spectre” (CVE-2017-5715, CVE-2017-5753, CVE-2017-5754): Impact on Dell Data Security Solutions

Microprocessor Side-Channel Vulnerabilities “Meltdown” and “Spectre” (CVE-2017-5715, CVE-2017-5753, CVE-2017-5754): Impact on Dell Data Security Solutions


The vulnerabilities known as Meltdown (CVE-2017-5754) and Spectre (CVE-2017-5715 /CVE-2017-5753) have been discovered in the central processing unit (CPU) performance feature called speculative execution. Systems with microprocessors utilizing speculative execution and indirect branch prediction may allow unauthorized disclosure of information to an attacker with local user access via a side-channel analysis of the data cache. This could lead to access to sensitive information stored in system memory.

The issue is not specific to any one vendor and takes advantage of techniques commonly used in most of the modern processor architectures. This means that a large range of products are affected from desktops and laptops to servers and storage, even smartphones. All customers should verify whether they are affected by going to the support sites of their hardware manufacturer. For Dell systems, affected systems can be found at: https://www.dell.com/support/meltdown-spectre. More information on these vulnerabilities and responses from other vendors, visit https://meltdownattack.com External Link.

In general, there are two essential components that need to be applied to mitigate the above mentioned vulnerabilities.

  1. Apply the processor microcode update via BIOS update per manufacturer instructions.
  2. Apply the applicable operating system patches according to the OS vendor guidance

All Dell Data Security customers with affected hardware (Dell or non-Dell in origin) need to apply the recommended remediation as outlined by their manufacturer. The Dell Data Security software may help prevent exploits from being successful, but is not a substitute for taking the manufacturer’s recommended steps for remediation.



Click either the Dell Encryption or Dell Threat Protection tab for specific information on product version compatibility.

Instructions for Dell Encryption customers (Dell Encryption Personal and Enterprise or Dell Data Guardian) are below. Please select the appropriate operating system for your environment.

Microsoft January 2018 update release contains a series patches to help mitigate exploitation by the Meltdown/Spectre vulnerabilities. For more information on Microsoft’s response to Meltdown and Spectre, visit https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/4073757 External Link .

Dell Data Security has validated compatibility against the latest set of Microsoft patches from January 2018 with:

  • Dell Encryption Enterprise v 8.17
  • Dell Encryption Personal v8.17
  • Dell Encryption External Media v8.17
  • Dell Encryption Enterprise for Self-Encrypting Drives (EMAgent) v 8.16.1
  • Dell Encryption Personal for Self-Encrypting Drives (EMAgent) v8.16.1
  • Dell Encryption BitLocker Manager (EMAgent) v18.16.1
  • Dell Full Disk Encryption (EMAgent) v18.16.1
  • Dell Data Guardian 1.4

Dell Data Security recommends ensuring your clients are on the validated version or later prior to applying the January 2018 patches.

For information on downloading the latest software version reference:

If the system running a Dell Data Security solution also uses a malware prevention software, then Windows requires a registry key to allow updates to pull down automatically for the January 2018 Microsoft updates.

Note: Manual updates do not require the registry modification.

To add the registry key:

  1. Right-click the Windows Start Menu and select Command Prompt (Admin).

  1. If User Account Control (UAC) is active, click Yes to open command prompt. If UAC is disabled proceed to step 3.

  1. In the Administrator Command Prompt, type reg add HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\QualityCompat /v cadca5fe-87d3-4b96-b7fb-a231484277cc /t REG_DWORD /d 0 /f and then press enter.

  1. Right-click the command prompt menu bar and then select Close.
Note:
  • Alternatively, registry modifications can be deployed in an enterprise environment using Group Policy Objects (GPO). For more information reference https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc753092(v=ws.11).aspx External Link .
  • Dell ProSupport does not support the creation, management, or deployment of GPOs. For support please contact Microsoft directly.

Apple has released mitigations to address Meltdown in macOS High Sierra 10.13.2.

More information on this patch can be found at https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT208394 External Link .

Dell Data Security validated against macOS High Sierra 10.13.2 with Dell Encryption Enterprise for Mac 8.16.2.8323. This build is available through Dell Data Security ProSupport.

Dell Data Security has validated compatibility against the latest set of Microsoft patches from January 2018 as well as the fixes contained in Apple macOS High Sierra 10.13.2 with:

  • Dell Endpoint Security Suite Enterprise v1441 or later
  • Dell Threat Defense v1442 or later
  • Dell Endpoint Security Suite Pro v1.6.0 or later (Microsoft Windows only)

For more information on product versioning reference:

For information on downloading the latest software reference:

For more information on specific system requirements reference:

Microsoft requires a registry modification to any windows system running malware prevention software (eg: Dell Endpoint Security Suite Enterprise, Dell Threat Defense, or Dell Endpoint Security Suite Pro) before automatically patching for Meltdown/Spectre.

Note: Manual updates do not require the registry modification.

To add the registry key:

  1. Right-click the Windows Start Menu and select Command Prompt (Admin).

  1. If User Account Control (UAC) is active, click Yes to open command prompt. If UAC is disabled proceed to step 3.

  1. In the Administrator Command Prompt, type reg add HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\QualityCompat /v cadca5fe-87d3-4b96-b7fb-a231484277cc /t REG_DWORD /d 0 /f and then press enter.

  1. Right-click the command prompt menu bar and then select Close.
Note:
  • Alternatively, registry modifications can be deployed in an enterprise environment using Group Policy Objects (GPO). For more information reference https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc753092(v=ws.11).aspx External Link .
  • Dell ProSupport does not support the creation, management, or deployment of GPOs. For support please contact Microsoft directly.

For support, US-based customers may contact Dell Data Security ProSupport at 877.459.7304, Option 1, Ext. 4310039, or via the Chat Portal. To contact support outside the US, reference ProSupport’s International Contact Numbers. For additional insights and resources, visit the Dell Security Community Forum.


Article ID: SLN308615

Last Date Modified: 06/26/2018 02:56 PM


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